The long and difficult road to creating an brand – HTC’s story

long-road HTC used to be a major force behind many other brands, such as iMate or O2 with the XDA line and even Palm. Around 2006 however the company made the decision to strike out on its own and create its own brand, a very unusual step for a Taiwanese company.

Peter Chou reports that the decision did not go over very well, with comments such as “You are out of your mind.. you are suiciding.. sorry (you’re) getting it very very wrong.. we are different …I burn all the ship..”.  HTC’s share price went into free fall, from 1200 to 500.

Despite cultivating operator relationships in the years prior to the decision, some mobile operator customer declined to carry the new brand. Examples include O2 Asia, which dropped HTC’s products completely.

HTC notes that the transition was not easy, and the company made some mistakes due to its culture rooted in its ODM business, but notes the HTC Touch Diamond as a break through point, as well as the Google Android relationship.

HTC is basing its strategy for the future on David Yoffie’s 5 Points of Strategy:

  • Be unique, me too strategy rarely work
  • Create value, beyond product
  • Communicate value
  • Be bold, be daring, be first, be different, take risk
  • Become a moving target

The 17 page presentation is a must read for any MBA or fan of the company.  Read it here.

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